Remember Names Without Forgetting

remember namesIt is actually proven that the most appealing sound is someone’s name.  Think about it.  Out of everything in the world, what would fill you with pleasure most?  For most people it is their own name.  Perhaps it is because this is the noise that identifies you from everyone else, or perhaps it is a sound that is made when someone else recognizes you as an individual.  It may be some hedonistic inherent pleasure, or maybe it is something that is learned over time.  What ever the case may be, think of the power you could wield by remembering names.  Calling someone by their name is a psychological stimulus,like popping a small treat into a dogs mouth. it instantly pumps endorphin’s through their neural pathways.  This is a great way to become more likable.


There are five steps to permanently remembering names.

 The most important part to this is that you are consciously aware of these steps during the meeting of a new person.


Step 1: Be Motivated 

This is probably the hardest part for me.  When I am somewhere new and there are people I haven’t ever met usually I don’t feel to anxious to get to know them.  Some people are naturally excited about meeting new friends.  Some are not.  For those of us who are not this step takes a little bit of mental discipline.

When you see someone new, pump yourself as if you were about to go push weights or run sprints.  Work yourself up, tell yourself how exciting meeting this person will be.  Think about how interesting they are.  Also here is a huge tip: Treat them like a well known friend. These really help to make people seem, well, cooler.  There is only as much depth as you care to explore.  That should be a quote.


Step 2: Sincerity

Yes, it sounds sappy. We all hate that word, don’t we? Sincerity always sounds like a chick-flick romantic comedy you saw with your ex staring some actress like Alexis Bledel or Zoey Deschanel.  You know the type, real down to earth and sweet-hearted, the actress not your ex.  Anyway. Forget about the nostalgic implications and be sincere.

Focus on the person.

Make sure you heard the name right.


Step 3:  Repeat, Repeat, Repeat.

Fun facts about neuroscience.  Every thought in the brain comes from electric pulses being shot down neurons int he brain.  Simple thoughts like a single persons name are no different.  Every time you think a thought more than once, that specific neuron becomes stronger, like a muscle would from lifting weights.  So repeating will actually work to make the name stick and that is not only a psychological fact but a physiological fact as well.

Don’t just be a goon and repeat the name out loud like some sort of lame parrot desperate for a treat. Be incognito about repeating names.

They say it, then you have one chance to repeat it right of the bat to clarify.

Now silently repeat it in your head, until you get the chance to introduce them to someone else. Bam, score right in the kisser.

If at all possible sprinkle the name in throughout the conversation.


Step 4: Associate

Fun fact about neuroscience.  Thoughts lead to other thoughts just like roads and trails.  If you want to get on the Boulevard then you have to take Bluff, or Main, or Riverroad.  Each time you establish a connection between one thought and another there is a new pathway for your brain to follow when you are trying to get to that specific thought.

Easy way to associate is think of the five senses.  For example their name is Paige, I would associate that person with the smell of an old book, the plain sight of a blank page, the sound of a page tearing, the texture of thick brown paper (you know, from like kindergarten. What we are not old enough to use regular fetching paper?) and perhaps I would skip associating this person with the sense of taste because so far I am not impressed with the associations and am afraid it might leave a bad taste in my mouth.


Step 5: Review 

This may seem weird and kind of creepy, but it really works.  Review that persons name.  When you get home hours after meeting your new friend. Get a pencil and paper and right down something you and your acquaintance talked about.  Do it in dialogue, it makes thinks more fun and it helps you to think of their mannerisms.